Crystal Methyd may have first appeared as a clown on Season 12 of RuPaul’s Drag Race, but her now-iconic runway looks were nothing to laugh at; this queen is one of a kind.
Whether she was reimagining Madonna’s “Ray Of Light” video look or coordinating a full Bert and Ernie fantasy for a duo challenge, Methyd quickly proved that she had the chops to take it all the way to the finale. I sat down to chat with one of the dolls of Missouri’s "Get Dusted" family and we talked about her Drag Race run, being ahead of the fashion curve both on and off the runway, and what she has planned for her next act.
Michael Cook: You have singlehandedly brought the mullet back to the mainstream Crystal Methyd; how does that feel?
Crystal Methyd: Yes it was all me. Joe Exotic had nothing to do with it.
MC: You were a Top Three contestant on RuPaul’s Drag Race; did you ever think it would turn out this way and that you would have been in that position?
CM: I think we all went into the completion hoping to win. I definitely got a little bit psyched out by all of the fierce competitors in the beginning though. Once I stopped doubting myself and doing drag the way that I do drag, that is when I think I really started succeeding in the competition.
MC: Have you heard from El DeBarge?
CM: (Laughs). I have not heard from El DeBarge, although I do follow him on Instagram. I don’t think that I have gotten a follow back. I do know though, that when you google El DeBarge, my picture comes up (laughs)!
MC: Every few seasons, there is a queen that is completely out of the box and truly presents a style of drag that has never been seen before. How would you describe your drag aesthetic to people?
CM: The drag that I do..you know, it is purposely stupid. It is referential to lots of comics and cartoons and it is definitely goofy. I think that I like to just try and do things that are really bizarre that make people question if it is really even drag or not.
MC: Speaking of, your Bert and Ernie reimagining during the duo challenge is truly one of the most remarkable and unique things probably ever seen on the runway.
CM: It is one of my favorite things! I am so glad that.I was able to show it on the show.
MC: You seem to get a great deal of time with RuPaul in terms of trying to give you some real TLC when you had the walkthroughs, and he was sure to tell you not to let you inner saboteur get the best of you. How did those moments feel?
CM: It was definitely shocking. Watching the show back, I felt that it was really obvious that Ru was interested in who I was as a person from the beginning. Being there and being starstruck by Ru, not knowing who El DeBarge was, I feel like all of those times that he was trying to make a personal connection with me, I was not able to latch onto it. I didn’t realize that he was trying to get to know me. I just feel like, truly blessed that I was able to make him laugh, get an on-screen hug and cry on him a little bit. Definitely such a magical experience.
"I feel like in the beginning, the judges just did not know who I was; now that people know who I am, I can really start to go wild!"
- Crystal Methyd
MC: There are many different types and styles of drag that many people may not get to see represented. You represented one of those unique perspectives for the world to see. That being said, your confidence surely must have grown a bit since this experience right?
CM: Drag is definitely what made me find my confidence. After doing the show and proving that I have so many sides to myself and I can listen to critiques and stay true to myself, I feel so much more confident in my drag now. I still feel really confident in my really big makeup and crazy attempts too. I feel like in the beginning, the judges just did not know who I was; now that people know who I am, I can really start to go wild!
MC: At home in Missouri, you host a night with your drag family called Get Dusted. What is the criteria to be a Get Dusted girl?
CM: There’s not really a criteria, there are so many Get Dusted girls. I started the event right around the time I started drag. I was really inspired by the New York City club scene and I wanted to create an environment that I did not see in my community. When it first started, everyone that performed on the stage was doing drag for the first time, because there were not very many drag queens that I knew of. I just forced my friends to get in drag. It was at a straight bar, so many people who had never experience drag before started getting involved and falling in love with it.
Now we are just a girl gang; it’s me, my friends Daya Betty, Daegen Michelle and Lux. The way that we came together, they were just in love with drag and they wanted to help me make the show better. We started doing choreographed numbers and we just kind of started bonding. I think doing drag in a group is really helpful when you are trying to grow. You can learn from each other, when one girl starts to look better you want to be sure that you are keeping up, things like that. My friends are the ones that keep pushing me to want to do better.
MC: Drag Race Season 12 is now over, so what is up next for Crystal Methyd?
CM: Well, since we are still in quarantine I have been trying to get into the YouTube videos. I feel like my makeup is something that I am really proud of and I like to show off. Making tutorials is a fun way to do that. I was able to make a few and got a little behind preparing for the finale. I am definitely going to get back into that. I think I have a couple of collaborations with a couple of artists ready to go also. I am just excited to travel when we are able to again; that is what I think I am the most excited for. To just make connections with other artists and create another family of collaborators that I can work with.
MC: How are you keeping yourself creative during quarantine?
CM: It has definitely been hard, because the way that I do drag I just go to thrift stores and I just find pieces. That has been really hard, not being able to get out and get the supplies that I need. At the same time, I am a bit of a hoarder so I have plenty of fabric and arts and crafts supplies at my disposal that I can use. That is what I have been trying to do; go through the random abundance of fabric that I have and create things from what I have. It’s challenging in a different way, but it’s still fun.